05242022Tue
Last updateFri, 20 May 2022 10am

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Landfill scavengers battle cops

State police Monday detained 67 people participating in a demonstration held by pepenadores (garbage dump waste pickers or scavengers) in the center of Guadalajara.

The skirmish between police and the protesters occurred at the intersection of Avenida Juárez and Calle Corona.

A spokesperson for police said the arrests were made when “a group of protesters obstructed the road and became aggressive after refusing to move.”

Reports said seven people sustained minor injuries, two of them state police officers.

The waste dump pickers have held a sit-in outside the Jalisco Government Palace since May 5 demanding a guarantee that they can continue earning a living following changes at the Matatlan and Los Laureles landfills, both of which are slated for closure.  State and municipal authorities are planning a major reorganization of trash collection and disposal in the Guadalajara metropolitan area over the next few years.

A day after the arrests, 62 of the detainees were released after payment of “administrative fines” of between 200 and 250 pesos, Mayor Pablo Lemus said.

Lemus said he is open to dialogue with the pepenadores and understands “the economic needs that these families have.”

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